Associated Press

US Supreme Court Won’t Speed Up Return of Remap Rulings

The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to speed up returning to North Carolina its rulings in the case of nearly 30 legislative districts that have been declared illegal racial gerrymanders. Denials by the court Thursday mean it won’t be until the end of June for the justices’ judgments to be issued to a three-judge court in Greensboro. The timeline is important because attorneys for voters who sued want the lower court to act quickly on directing legislators to redraw maps and deciding whether a special election under these maps should be held this fall. Republican legislative leaders had asked...

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Bill to Fight Opioid Abuse Clears Senate Panel

A measure designed to address North Carolina’s opioid abuse crisis has cleared a Senate panel. The Senate Health Care committee unanimously approved a bill Thursday to make changes to the rules on prescribing and dispensing drugs like Oxycontin or morphine. The drugs come with a high risk of addiction and can be a gateway to heroin use. The measure would also strengthen requirements for doctors and pharmacists on the use of a statewide controlled substance database. The bill was changed to remove veterinarians from the bill and include a provision for a study on how they’ll comply with reporting...

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Court Plans to ‘Act Promptly’ on Remap, Election Decision

A federal court that struck down 28 North Carolina legislative districts last summer says it intends to “act promptly” on deciding when new maps should be redrawn and whether a special election is necessary in light of a Supreme Court ruling this week affirming its decision. The U.S. District Court in Greensboro issued a written notice Friday, a day after attorneys for voters who successfully sued asked a three-judge panel to decide quickly on a schedule to fix the districts. The court invited attorneys for the state, legislators and the State Board of Elections to provide input “as expeditiously...

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Pitt Releases Johnson to Play at UNC as Graduate Transfer

Pittsburgh has released guard Cameron Johnson to play immediately at North Carolina as a graduate transfer. Johnson’s father, former Pitt player Gil Johnson, said the school notified the family Thursday that it has removed any restrictions for his son to play next year for the reigning national Tar Heels. Pittsburgh had cited an internal policy in trying to require the 6-foot-8 Johnson to sit out a year if he went to another Atlantic Coast Conference school instead of playing right away with two seasons of eligibility. Gil Johnson told The Associated Press that there were “no hard feelings” and...

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N Carolina Lawmakers Refuse Remapping Session

Republican legislators in North Carolina have refused to hold a special session demanded by Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper to redraw General Assembly districts, saying his proclamation is faulty and unconstitutional. House Republicans on Thursday upheld a ruling by Speaker Tim Moore that the “extra session” was unnecessary and invalid, in part because lawmakers already are in their annual work session. That means the Thursday afternoon session Cooper wanted won’t occur. Senate Republicans rejected the special session idea as well later Thursday. Cooper is trying to force the hand of GOP legislators to quickly redraw nearly 30 House and Senate...

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North Carolina Governor Presses Lawmakers to Redraw Maps Now

North Carolina Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper is pushing Republican state legislators to immediately redraw General Assembly districts, now that the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed that nearly 30 House and Senate maps are illegal racial gerrymanders. Cooper announced Wednesday he’s calling a special session — to begin Thursday and run simultaneously with the current General Assembly work session — to get new maps drawn. However, lawmakers are not obligated to draw maps as he requests. Cooper told reporters it’s time new boundaries are drawn because the General Assembly has been operating under illegal lines since 2011. The nation’s highest...

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Justices Affirm Ruling Striking NC Legislative Districts

The Supreme Court has upheld a lower court ruling that struck down 28 state House and Senate districts in North Carolina because they violated the rights of black voters. But the justices rejected the court’s order to redraw the districts and hold a special election. The action by the justices Monday sends the matter back to the lower court, which could order new districts in time for the regular cycle of elections in 2018. Democrats hope new district maps will help them break the Republican stranglehold on the state legislature. Democrats need to capture three House seats or six...

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Anti-LGBT Posters Divide Students at North Carolina School

Posters equating supporting LGBT rights to supporting sin have divided a North Carolina high school. The Times-News of Burlington reports the posters at Eastern Alamance High School in Mebane referenced the Biblical story of Sodom and Gomorrah. An openly gay sophomore, Jeremy Clevenger, told the newspaper he reported the posters to an assistant principal Tuesday and was told the posters were “freedom of speech.” But Alamance-Burlington Schools spokeswoman Jenny Faulkner says the posters were taken down last weekend because no one sought permission to post them. She says permission would not have been granted because of the content. Clevenger...

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UNC Responds to 3rd Set of NCAA Charges in Academic Case

North Carolina has responded to the third set of charges it received from the NCAA in the long-running academic fraud case. The 102-page document released Thursday marked the latest step in the seven-year investigation. UNC faces five top-level charges, including lack of institutional control, in the multiyear probe centered on irregular courses in an academic department. In an argument that mirrors its response last August to its second Notice of Allegations, North Carolina is challenging the NCAA’s jurisdiction to pursue charges for issues the school says “are academic in nature” and “lie beyond the reach of the bylaws belatedly...

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NBA Announces 2019 All-Star Game Will Be Held in Charlotte

The NBA All-Star game is headed back to Charlotte in 2019, a couple of years longer than anticipated. The NBA announced that the All-Star weekend will be held Feb. 15-17 in Charlotte and the game will be played at the Spectrum Center, home of the Charlotte Hornets. The league had selected Charlotte to host the 2017 All-Star game, but later moved the game to New Orleans because of the state law restricting the rights of LGBT people. However, a compromise was struck in March to partially erase the impact of the House Bill 2 law limiting anti-discrimination protections for...

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